There is increasing interest in the “home front” during the Second World War, including issues such as how people coped with rationing, how women worked to contribute to the war effort, and how civilian morale fluctuated over time. Most studies on this subject are confined to Britain, or to a single other colonial territory, neglecting the fact that Britain controlled a large Empire and that there were numerous “home fronts”, each of which contributed greatly to the war effort but each in slightly different ways.
This book considers “home fronts” from an overall imperial perspective and in a broad array of territories – Australia, India, South Africa, Ceylon, Palestine and Kenya as well as Britain. It examines many aspects of wartime life – food, communications, bombing, volunteering, internment and more, and discusses important themes including identity, gender, inequality, and the relationship between civilians and the state. Besides case studies outlining the detail of the situation in different territories and in different areas of life, the book assesses “home fronts” across the Empire in a comprehensive way, setting the case studies in their wider context, and placing the subject in, and advancing, the historiography.
More about the book
Mark J. Crowley and Sandra Trugden Dawson, eds., Home Fronts: Britain and the Empire at War, 1939-45, (Boydell Press, 2017), Hardcover
Mark J. Crowley is Associate Professor of History at Wuhan University, China.
Sandra Trudgen Dawson is an Instructor in the Department of History at the University of Maryland.